Tendulkar Reaches Milestone As India Frustrate Proteas

Tendulkar Reaches Milestone As India Frustrate Proteas
Tendulkar Reaches Milestone As India Frustrate Proteas
©REUTERS/Mike Hutchings (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

India 136 & 454-8 (Tendulkar 107no, Dhoni 90) v
South Africa 620-4 dec. (Kallis 201no)
First Test, Centurion Park, day four

Sachin Tendulkar broke new ground as he became the first man to score 50 Test centuries as India frustrated South Africa on day four of the first Test at Centurion Park.

Despite Tendulkar's heroics, India closed the day on 454 for eight - still 30 runs short of making South Africa bat again - when bad weather closed on.

Tendulkar was unbeaten on 107 in 226 balls having batted solidly all day to lead the fight following early wickets which appeared to be putting South Africa on course for a victory with a day to spare.

After nightwatchman Ishant Sharma (23) was caught by Hashim Amla off Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel had Rahul Dravid caught by Mark Boucher for 43 and India slipped to 277 for six when VVS Laxman (8) and Suresh Raina (5) made little impression.

Laxman was caught by AB de Villiers off Lonwabo Tsotsobe and Raina was caught by Paul Harris off Jacques Kallis.

Tendulkar, however, remained unflustered and with Mahendra Singh Dhoni launching a counter-attack at the other end, India began to close the gap between the two sides - South Africa having declared on 620 for four in reply to India's first innings of 136.

Dhoni hit 14 fours in his 106-ball innings of 90, falling after Tendulkar had steered the ball into the covers to reach his landmark century when Steyn had him caught by Boucher.

Harbhajan Singh (1) was the final Indian wicket to fall in the day when he offered a catch to Kallis off Harris.

Tendulkar, who hit 13 fours and a six, was batting alongside Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, who made three, when stumps were drawn.

South Africa owed their strong position in the match to bowlers Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn, who took seven wickets on the opening day and then excellent batting from the top order when - Smith and Alviro Petersen also scoring half-centuries.

India's fightback began on day three when openers Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag stroked half-centuries after Jacques Kallis scored a maiden Test double-century and AB de Villiers smashed a century in 75 balls - the quickest by a South African - to set up the declaration.

 © Cricket World 2010